COMPETITION WATCH: Contrans increases profits in third quarter

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WOODSTOCK, Ont. — Contrans Income Fund saw an increase in revenue as well as net earnings in the third quarter.

Net earnings were $11.4 million for the third quarter, compared to $9.1 million over the same period last year. Revenue (not including fuel surcharges) was $104.6 million for the quarter, compared to $108.2 million for the third quarter of 2007. But when fuel surcharges are taken into consideration, revenue was up from $122.1 million in Q3 07 to $128.9 million in 08.

For the nine months ended Sept. 30, net earnings were up to $26.5 million from $18.7 million over the same period in 2007.

“We enjoyed another solid financial performance in the third quarter,” said Stan Dunford, Chairman and CEO of Contrans. “Aggressive sales efforts this year have resulted in new sources of revenue that have mitigated the impact of falling manufacturing output. Management has continued to react quickly and decisively to these and other challenges posed by the current market conditions.”

Dunford said he expects further challenges in the trucking industry, but is confident the company’s diversity will help it weather the storm.

“Economic forecasts indicate that things are going to get worse before they get better and could stay that way for a period of time,” he said. “We expect that the diversity of our customer base and the non-cyclical elements within it will continue to provide us with some shelter from the effects of reduced shipping volumes.”

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